8 Life Lessons for 2017 Grads & The Rest of Us

WBBM-TV GM Marty Wilke shares her eight life lessons with 2017 grads.
WBBM-TV GM Marty Wilke shares her eight life lessons with 2017 grads.

During my six years at DePaul University, it has been an honor to sit on the Commencement stage with my dedicated and talented colleagues as we celebrate the future talent of our profession. I’ve also enjoyed hearing from three friends—Al Golin, Richard Edelman and Marty Wilke–who received honorary degrees and shared important messages with graduates and their families.

The late Al Golin was honored during 2012 graduation events. Just as he advised the late Ray Kroc at McDonald’s nearly 60 years ago, he urged College of Communication grads to build a “trust bank” (a term he coined years ago). He said the “trust bank” helped McDonald’s build “deposits” of goodwill in case they might need it for “withdrawal” when a crisis or sensitive issue arose.” Al submitted that there is a positive connection between trust and results. Those individuals and organizations that build strong trusting relationships are best prepared to fully deliver on their missions and achieve results.

During the 2015 Commencement, Richard Edelman introduced graduates to “communications marketing,” a term he had just begun floating with PR and marketing audiences. He explained that chief communications officer and chief marketing officer roles are increasingly overlapping or merging into marketing communications, which includes advertising, digital, media buying, PR and research.

At last Sunday’s Commencement, Marty Wilke, President and General Manager of WBBM-TV/Channel 2, shared these eight lessons she has used throughout her personal and professional life:

  • Be your true self
  • Be Brave
  • Be Resourceful
  • Be open to different ideas and opportunities
  • Be open to failure and to trying again
  • Be open to listening, in order to learn, not just to respond
  • Be determined to live the mission of St. Vincent DePaul – To continuously and actively amplify marginalized voices and to create opportunities that advance social justice.
  • And, BE VERY confident in the knowledge that no one makes it alone!

Thank You, Father Dennis!

Father Dennis Holtschneider
Father Dennis Holtschneider

Sadly, this year’s Commencement marked that last one presided over by Father Dennis Holtschneider, DePaul President. After 13 accomplishment-rich years of building a world-class university, Father Dennis is moving onto a new career as executive vice president and chief operating officer of Ascension, the nation’s largest non-profit healthcare organization. His interest in and enthusiastic support of the work of the College of Communication and this writer will be forever appreciated. Save Save

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